World

Burundi sets new July date for presidential elections amid persistent unrest in the capital

  • A policeman jumps as he tries to disperse a crowd of angry residents, after a man was killed by police and relatives were initially prevented from burying him in a timely manner in accordance with his Muslim beliefs, causing anger in his neighborhood, although permission for the burial was later granted, in the Buyenzi area of the capital Bujumbura, in Burundi Wednesday, June 10, 2015. Burundi's controversial presidential elections are now set for July 15. (AP Photo/Gildas Ngingo)

    A policeman jumps as he tries to disperse a crowd of angry residents, after a man was killed by police and relatives were initially prevented from burying him in a timely manner in accordance with his Muslim beliefs, causing anger in his neighborhood, although permission for the burial was later granted, in the Buyenzi area of the capital Bujumbura, in Burundi Wednesday, June 10, 2015. Burundi's controversial presidential elections are now set for July 15. (AP Photo/Gildas Ngingo)  (The Associated Press)

  • A woman shouts at a police officer, after a man was killed by police and relatives were initially prevented from burying him in a timely manner in accordance with his Muslim beliefs, causing anger in his neighborhood, although permission for the burial was later granted, in the Buyenzi area of the capital Bujumbura, in Burundi Wednesday, June 10, 2015. Burundi's controversial presidential elections are now set for July 15. (AP Photo/Gildas Ngingo)

    A woman shouts at a police officer, after a man was killed by police and relatives were initially prevented from burying him in a timely manner in accordance with his Muslim beliefs, causing anger in his neighborhood, although permission for the burial was later granted, in the Buyenzi area of the capital Bujumbura, in Burundi Wednesday, June 10, 2015. Burundi's controversial presidential elections are now set for July 15. (AP Photo/Gildas Ngingo)  (The Associated Press)

  • Demonstrators opposed to a third term for President Nkurunziza dive to the ground as army soldiers shoot in the air to disperse the protest, in the rural area of Mugongomanga, east of the capital Bujumbura, in Burundi Wednesday, June 10, 2015.  Burundi's controversial presidential elections are now set for July 15, although the government has been under pressure to delay the polls by several weeks amid ongoing unrest over Nkurunziza's controversial bid for a third term in office. (AP Photo/Berthier Mugiraneza)

    Demonstrators opposed to a third term for President Nkurunziza dive to the ground as army soldiers shoot in the air to disperse the protest, in the rural area of Mugongomanga, east of the capital Bujumbura, in Burundi Wednesday, June 10, 2015. Burundi's controversial presidential elections are now set for July 15, although the government has been under pressure to delay the polls by several weeks amid ongoing unrest over Nkurunziza's controversial bid for a third term in office. (AP Photo/Berthier Mugiraneza)  (The Associated Press)

A presidential spokesman says presidential elections in Burundi are now set for July 15 after President Pierre Nkurunziza signed a decree accepting the electoral commission's proposal.

Gervais Abayeho said Wednesday that parliamentary polls will be held on June 29, according to the decree signed Tuesday night.

Burundi's government had been under pressure to delay the polls by several weeks amid ongoing unrest over Nkurunziza's controversial bid for a third term.

Opposition groups have said the current electoral commission panel lacks the authority because it is missing members. Two of its five regular members are believed to have fled the country amid political unrest.

It is unclear how delaying elections by a few weeks will reduce the ire of opposition groups who are calling the president's third term bid unconstitutional.